Of course, the Google Play Store isn’t the only app and content marketplace today. Rivals Apple and Amazon operate their App Store and Appstore respectively. All of these marketplaces are designed to let users download apps for their smartphones and tablets.
Unfortunately, not all app stores are created equally, and some shine above the rest. Google’s Play Store is often considered the premier app store because of the prominence of Android and Google itself. Alternatives are available, but can any of them best the Play Store?
But First, The Google Play Store!
The Play Store is the default app store for all Android OS smartphones and tablets. Therefore, it shouldn’t surprise many that the marketplace features more than 1.2 million apps. Users can access and download other forms of content, too, including music and movies. Most apps are available for free, and a user rating system helps weed out apps that aren’t up to par. Currently, Google Play is about even with the Apple App Store in counting stats, but more people use the Play Store because Android is the most popular OS.
Amazon’s marketplace comes standard with the company’s tablets and smartphone. However, the Appstore must be installed as a third-party app on other Android devices. This store features a fraction of the number of apps compared to Google Play and Apple’s App Store. It’s mostly designed for users in Amazon’s ecosystem that use the company’s branded devices. Then again, a growing number of apps and a free premium app each day helps draw users to the Appstore. It still pales in comparison to the Play Store, though.
Apple App Store
By certain measurements, the App Store is the premier app marketplace for mobile devices. Only iPhone and iPad users can access this marketplace, which features no less than 1.2 million apps, like Google Play. The App Store is known for having more premium apps and a better quality of apps overall. Still, not everyone is willing to pay for their apps, and far fewer individuals use iOS compared to Android OS. Most people would still consider these two app stores fairly comparable in more ways than one.
Other App Marketplaces
Unsurprisingly, other app stores do exist in this day and age. Windows Phone users can access Microsoft’s Windows Phone Store for apps and other content. Various mobile device manufacturers have attempted to push their own marketplaces, too. At this point, most of these marketplaces have failed because there aren’t enough users or enough developer support. Microsoft’s app store continues to grow at a steady pace, but it’s not going to get near the Play Store anytime soon.
Two Obvious Champions Here
Without a doubt, no app stores can compete with Google Play or the Apple App Store. It’s debatable which marketplace is the true champion for smartphone users. Google Play has the numbers, but the App Store is often seen as a higher quality store nonetheless. In the end, there are two clear winners in this battle. On the other hand, Microsoft and Amazon could easily be seen as the losers here.